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In all likelihood, they were told, Joey would probably not learn how to speak.His father, Jose, an engineer, approached Joey's education methodically.

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Laugeson pokes her head in the door."Do you know what's funny? "You guys were exchanging numbers, and your parents were doing the same thing."In the other room, the social coaches are having a little party of their own, passing around sandwiches and swapping stories. He even found his own way home using Uber, she adds.

Laugeson gathers the students and coaches together."This has been a very special group," she tells them.

Standing in front of a conference room table on the UCLA campus, Albert Miranda fixes a wide smile on his face and stares at Elina Veytsman, giving her the once-over. The students around the table giggle as the tension rises. Elina, the program's coordinator, and Albert, a Ph D student trainee from the American School of Professional Psychology at Argosy University, then act out a slightly more successful scenario: Albert glances up with a brief smile, and looks away. Elina, charmed, returns the eye contact and smiles. Laugeson, an assistant clinical professor at UCLA's Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, laughs and turns to the whiteboard to go through the dos and don'ts of "flirting with your eyes:" Don't smile with teeth; don't stare.

Then Elizabeth Laugeson steps in."What was that like for Elina? Glance up briefly — but repeat the process a few times.

They've enrolled in a 16-week program to help them navigate the treacherous waters of social interaction, and on this Monday night, week 11 of the session, they're diving into the perils of dating.

Last modified 22-Oct-2018 21:40